Projector Collective 1.0

The Last Days Of The President

John Carter Anthony Kelly Jay Roche
An event at an undisclosed location in the Wicklow Hills, November 2006


About the project:

The Last Days of the President

Projector is a collective of artists. Projector 1.0 showcases a collaboration between the artists John Carter, Anthony Kelly and Jay Roche. Projector 1.0 is the first in an ongoing series of projects.

Thirty years ago President Cearball O'Dalaigh resigned as Uachtaráin na hÉireann during a politically unstable period of recent Irish history.A series of events, in which the President clashed with the then Government lead to this resignation, however some doubt has existed as to the specific reasons for O'Dalaigh stepping down. Within two years he had died.

Projector Collective remembers 1976 from their own childhoods as a summer of endless sunshine with only faint echoes of distant gunfire coming from across the border. In the midst of their childhoods they were oblivious to another man's political isolation and demise. When reflecting on this time, Projector were moved by the fall of a man from the highest position in the land and in reading some of the recently released archives of O'Dalaigh were reminded that behind a lot of power and prestige lie self doubt and disappointment. Whilst they played on the dusty streets of Dublin the President was abdicating and turning away from the country and ultimately from life. In their first collaboration as a collective they hope to reflect on this event and create a work that marks a moment in History. Far from their work being a political statement they see it as a requiem using some of O'Dalaigh's own words that up until now have been unavailable to the public. Projector Collective were struck by the poignancy of these words.

The Last Days of a President - is an outdoor installation set at an undisclosed location in the Wicklow hills. It consists of a light projection displaying the final notes and unfinished letters of the Presidents last days in office. In making this artwork the artists draw a paralel with the barber in the Irish story ofKing Labraidh Loingseach - the King with the Horses Ear's - releasing secrets into the hills and mountains of Wicklow. His words were projected in a loop over a 12 hour period as late afternoon turned to dusk and then night. In this way they feel they have given back the secret thoughts of a fallen king.

There is an edition of photographic prints and a limited edition DVD multiple available from

President Cearball O'Dalaigh
Photographs by Doreen Kennedy